Hear So Good Audiology is one of few audiology clinics in the North Bay Area that can expertly fit and service all makes and models of hearing aids. If you don’t see your manufacturer listed below, call us to find out if your hearing aids can be checked at our clinic.
Oticon’s claim to fame is their unique Opn S technology. In complex listening situations with multiple voices, these devices can focus on individual dominant voices without completely obliterating your awareness of the less dominant voices. Their devices are extremely automatic and their smart phone App provides basic control of volume and speech focus. Oticon devices have great design aesthetics and tend to fit very comfortably and discreetly behind many ears. Their arsenal of ear dome options allows most individuals with mild to moderate hearing losses to be comfortably fit without a custom earmold. Oticon Opn S is our “go to” product for individuals with mild hearing loss that hear fine in quiet but have problems in noise. The Opn S devices are available in rechargeable options with and without T-coils for use with public loop systems.
Phonak Marvel is the latest technology from Phonak. This product line delivers hands-free Bluetooth audio (both phone calls and entertainment) from both iPhone and Android smartphones. They even work with newer flip phones. A Phonak App that runs on your smart phone allows you to adjust volume and many other hearing aid features. Devices are available in rechargeable and disposable battery options, with and without T-coils. The non-rechargeable devices typically are smaller. Get a device with a T-coil if you need wireless pick up of direct audio transmissions from loop systems in theaters and other public spaces like airports. Even with hearing aids some people with more severe hearing loss struggle to understand a voice in a quiet room that is not coming directly from the front – if this describes your problem, then Phonak has special and unique features to help. Finally, with Phonak Roger accessories linked to your hearing aids, you will be able to hear speech clearly in some of the noisiest places.
Resound was the first manufacturer to introduce wireless Bluetooth technology to hearing aids and their Quattro line of devices has a track record of superior connection reliability with iPhones. These hearing aids also have the highest input dynamic range available meaning that the loudest sounds can be heard without distortion and the softest sounds can be audible. This feature is most noticeable with music. Their smart phone compatibility has expanded to include Samsung Galaxy and Google Pixel Android smartphones. The rechargeable Quattro’s come with a battery backup in the charger that provides for three un-tethered charge cycles. A full charge of the hearing aids will provide 24 hours of uninterrupted operation without Bluetooth streaming. If you spend lots of time on phone calls, streaming music or listening to podcasts, the 21 hours of run time before a charge is needed may help you decide that the rechargeable Quattro’s are for you. In addition, the Resound App is superb and will allow you to be in control of the many nuances of your hearing aids.
Signia does a great job at allowing precise control of device settings in different acoustic environments where noise and speech may or may not be present. This feature makes it easier for us to help individuals that are sensitive to louder sounds. Signia has some of the most innovative product designs on the market including the Silk Nx and the Styletto Connect. The Silk Nx is extremely small and when coupled with Signia’s proprietary snap-on sleeves, can be fitted discreetly in many ears. Although these devices are too small to sport antennas for direct Bluetooth audio streaming, any smart phone can run the Signia App to control volume and tone, and also switch up to six different acoustic programs. The Styletto Connect is an ultra-slim receiver-in-canal device that comfortably fits behind most ears with excellent aesthetics and discretion. These devices are rechargeable and come with a small recharger case that is very similar to the one used with Apple AirPod wireless earphones. The charger has a built-in battery that allows the hearing aids to be re-charged three times without external power. The hearing aids will run about 16 hours on a full charge. If you need longer run time you can get the Signia X Rechargeable devices with a 23 hour run time.
Starkey has just (March 2020) launched the only rechargeable custom hearing aids available. These devices use the same Livio/Livio AI technology that has been around for for behind-the-ear and receiver-in-canal devices. Starkey products provide superior prevention of the audible feedback (squealing) that can be associated with more severe hearing losses and unusual ear anatomies. Starkey has the quality workmanship to produce small custom devices that fit entirely or almost entirely within the ear canal and pack the power necessary for more severe hearing losses. Many of these devices can also be paired with iPhones and Google Pixel smartphones enabling phone calls and entertainment audio to be streamed directly to the hearing aids in your ears. Their sophisticated App provides many ways to customize the sound you get. Additionally, Livio/Livio AI devices are rechargeable, provide some of the best CROS/BiCROS options on the market, while the Livio AI offers additional non-hearing related features like a fall reporting technology that can automatically contact a loved-one or caregiver when you fall down.
Widex Evoke hearing aids have perhaps one of the most sophisticated sound classification systems to accurately detect up to 11 different acoustic environments such as a social setting with multiple conversations happening close by, a noisy restaurant with a voice close to you, an airport when you are trying to hear an announcement, etc. The Widex devices have some of the highest quality microphones and front-end processing available in a hearing aid, enabling awareness of many of the softer sound around you. These devices are best suited for individuals that aren’t bothered much by hearing environmental and ambient sounds as the focus of these instruments is to maximize audibility of the world around you with acoustic comfort playing a lesser role. Music aficionados rate the Widex devices highly for their special ability to process music with richness not usually present in many hearing aids. The Widex devices come with a rechargeable option that as opposed to the more common Lithium Ion technology uses a unique Silver-Zinc battery. These batteries require more frequent replacement, but the batteries can be changed by the user and either rechargeable of disposable batteries may be used.
There are several different styles of hearing aids. Depending on a variety of factors, there will be a style just right for you. Dr. Weissman will help you sort through the pros and cons to each option so you feel confident in your choice.
CAUTION: Hearing aids are medical devices, and should be prescribed and fitted by someone trained and qualified. Buying a hearing aid without an in-person consultation, fitting, and follow-up appointments with a licensed professional could result in you purchasing an ineffective hearing instrument for your loss, or worse, damaging your hearing further. Furthermore, your hearing evaluation and consultation can highlight other serious ear health conditions. For these reasons, we do not advocate the purchase of hearing aids by mail or online.